Tuesday, July 13, 2010

July 10 to 12 Trip to Sioux Lookout – page 4

I took care of one of the shops I had to do in Sioux Lookout, then entered it online by stopping behind one of the hotels in town and getting on the wireless internet.
While on the internet I thought I would try to find the article written by Bill Redekop in the Winnipeg Free Press about the tree stump in the woods off the Trans-Canada Highway in the Sandilands. I found the article and it had directions on how to find it. The article said there was a sand road 7 km west of the rest area, right at the sign that advertised Zack’s chip bus. The stump was supposed to be down a trail and was 100 feet off the highway. The article is located at http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/search-for-manitoba-lore-cracks-open-natures-door-97139459.html .
I made note of the instructions so we could look for the stump on the way home the next day.

We went for dinner at the only restaurant in town that seemed to be open on a Sunday, Knobby’s. It was overlooking one of the fly-in fishing docks. The restaurant was filled with stuffed animals. There was a stuffed beaver that greeted people at the door as they entered the restaurant. There was a bear wearing a t-shirt standing in the restaurant. The walls were filled with fish. One of the fish had antlers.
We stayed at the same rest area overnight and took care of the last shop in Sioux Lookout the next morning. Then we were off to Dryden to perform two mystery shops.
I got the shops completed, then tried to get an internet connection in Dryden at one of the hotels. I was not able to get a connection after trying for a few minutes, so we decided to leave Dryden and try again in another town.

We stopped in Vermillion Bay again, and tried to get an internet connection again, but did not have any luck. We did, however, find another statue. It was in front of a Napa Store, and was a huge Sasquash or something similar.

After leaving Vermillion Bay we went down the road just past Narrow Lake. Along the side of the road, coming from the West, was a shopping cart. It was the Japanese fellow we have been seeing on the highway these past few weeks. We stopped the van, and crossed the street to talk to him.
He was not able to speak very much English, but knew a few key phrases. He said he left Vancouver on May 10 and was going to New York, expecting to be there in November. He is a mountain climber and an adventurer. He has climbed Mount Fuji and Mount Kilimanjaro. He showed us a map of his next adventure he has planned. It was a map of Australia. He is planning on crossing it from the West Coast to the East. He said he purchased the shopping cart at the beginning of his journey from a homeless person. He paid $7.00 for it.
We gave his a bottle of juice, and asked if we could take a picture. He held up his flag of Japan and offered a marker for us to sign it. The flag was filled with signatures.
We asked him if Canada was a larger country than he thought when he first started. He did not now what we were asking but recognized the word country. Then he mentioned Japan. I pointed here and held my hands out wide. Then he knew what we were asking and laughed, nodding his head. He said it is very large.
We offered him a safe trip and waved good-bye. He watched us drive off down the highway, waving farewell before pushing on.
We pulled into Kenora by mid-afternoon. I was able to get an internet connection at one of the hotels in town and was able to submit my shop reports online. I had an eight hour deadline to have the reports entered from the time each shop was conducted. The first shop I did was at 10:30am, so it had to be entered before 6:30pm. I was not sure we would make it home by then, and did not want to rush the trip home because of the deadline, so finding a wireless connection was necessary. I got the reports entered and we moved on.

We stopped at the rest area across from the statue of Husky the Muskie. We needed to stretch our legs and I wanted a break and something to eat after working on the reports.
We took a picture of a tug boat docked in the park.
We left Kenora and headed back to Manitoba. I was watching for the rest area in the Sandilands so we could try to find the 10 foot tree stump. We passed the rest area where Zacks chip bus was located, and went 7 kilometers. There was no sand road or any other road. Another kilometer down the highway there was a road that crossed to the other side of the highway. We turned onto the highway heading East, and went one kilometer. There it was, the sign for Zack’s chip bus, saying it was 7 kilometers down the road. And just before the sign was a sand road. I turned down the road. I saw a two tracked path going into the bush, but was not sure that was it. We decided to keep going on the sand road a bit further. It went on for a while, and we were looking to the left and the right. We could not see anything in the bush that looked like a stump. The picture in the Free Press showed a large stump that would stand out in the woods. He said you could see it from the road. We did not see anything on the road we were going down.

I decided to turn back and have a look down the two tracked path. We walked a short distance and there it was, on the right hand side. It was a large cement tree stump. We found it. We took a few pictures, then got out of the bush. The mosquitoes were eating us alive, and we sprayed ourselves with bug spray.
After that we headed for home.

July 10 to 12 Trip to Sioux Lookout – page 3

In the morning we were awoken by a van pulling in with an empty canoe rack. Soon it was full of canoes, and a gang of teens wearing tams appeared around it. You know, Scottish hats with pompoms on top. It turns out the teens go on several canoe trips each year to different locations. For each location they are given different colored tams.
We decided to go exploring a bit more on Sunday morning. The town was dead, I mean dead. Nobody was around and it looks like nothing was open. We took a drive down several roads that lead out of town thinking we may find another nice area, but to no avail.

We came back into town, found a couple of things to photograph, like the train engines. It seems every town finds a reason to stick a train in a field, and this town is no different.

But Sioux Lookout has signage. They don’t just say ‘stay off’, but go into detail on why you should stay off the train.

Then there is the tourist information center. The sign out front lists attractions in Sioux Lookout. We thought that might be helpful in finding something to do in this town, seeing we do not fish. The places of interest did not seem to be tourist related.

The first item on the list of attractions is the OPP Office. What? Did they get new bars? The list is just silly.
Other notable places of interest are Sioux Lookout Zone Hospital, Post Office, Extended Care Facility and the Hugh Allen Clinic.

Then there was an advertisement for a Signage Company offering ‘Customm’ signs. I should send that one in to David Letterman for his stupid signs segment.

We went in and talked to the lady in the Information and Tourism Center and asked what there is to do in the area if you do not fish. She recommended going to Sioux Mountain. She gave us a photocopied sheet with directions on how to get there.

So, we went 6 km down the highway to Hudson Road, turned right and went about 7 km to the sign for the Sioux High School. Then it said to go down the road until you find a fork in the road and go to the right. It was not a fork, there were three roads. We went to the right, down a road that was no longer being repaired, with craters that used to be pot holes, just to find a locked gate. We turned around and had a look at the other options. The middle road did not look safe, so we took the road to the left. It seemed to go on forever with a terrible washboard surface. After traveling for a while on that road, we gave up, and turned around. We had one last look at the center road and chose not to go down.

I knew from the directions that there were 3 or 4 more forks in the road along the path to this mountain. I am not even sure what would be found once we got there. And the instructions said you had to hike the last 20 minutes of the journey. We chose to leave and headed back to the highway.
I made the decision to go into the Ojibway Provincial Park and see what they had to offer. I was sure there would be another picnic area by the lake in the park, where we could sit and relax, and maybe have a picnic. We had stopped at the grocery store in town after talking with the Tourism lady, and got supplies for a picnic.
We pulled into the park, got to the park gates and there was nobody there. The sign said it was self serve and one should deposit a cheque in an envelope for the fees. Well, I did not have a cheque. So, I decided to help myself to a map of the park and proceed on. I was sure they would eventually come across us in the park and I would be able to pay by visa at that point.
One of the park officials did find us, and I was able to pay my fee. I mentioned the mis-adventure we had trying to find Sioux Mountain. The park official said nobody tries to drive that road. He said it is not a good road and would likely destroy our suspension. He recommended taking the tracks. After he left, I looked at the pamphlet we were given. There were no instructions on how to find the tracks, and no map drawn to show where Sioux Mountain even is. And to top it off, the pamphlet says not to take the train tracks because it is illegal and you may get in trouble.
I am thinking that Sioux Mountain is just a town joke, something the locals tell tourists about and see how many try to find it.

July 10 to 12 Trip to Sioux Lookout – page 2

We left Vermillion Bay and got to Dryden by about 5:00pm. I had to perform a shop in Dryden but there was no hurry. We wanted to drive around and check out the sites. The tourist information we got on Dryden led us to believe there may be something of interest in the town, and we may stay the night, and go on to Sioux Lookout the next day.
As soon as we entered the town of Dryden you could smell it. It was the smell of a sewer. Dryden had a Pulp and Paper plant that made the town not just stink, it was a stench. The town was under an umbrella of stenchification. But we were in the town, and I still wanted to see what the tourist brochure was talking about. I turned off the highway at the sign that said “business district”. I wanted to get a tour of the town, and while doing so, pick up a few supplies. We got our supplies and proceeded to leave the business district the same way we entered. But do you think there would be a single sign in town that would point you to highway 17? No. I even knew I drove past the mill and tried a few times to trace back my steps. After several attempts I finally got on the right road and back onto the highway, where the “suspension bridge” was.

I could see the suspension bridge as we drove over the sewer, I mean river. I knew where it was. It was just to my left on the highway. The first driveway was for a hotel. That couldn’t be it. Then we had to go down the road a bit and Johnson Park was there. That must be the place where the suspension bridge was, or so I thought. We parked in the lot, and read the signs. No mention of a bridge. There was a walking path. Should we take the path? It was starting to rain, or pour with thunder and lightning was more like it. I got my umbrella / lightning rod, and proceeded down the path. I was determined to see this suspension bridge. I walked for a bit, still no sign.

Then through the trees I could see the bridge. It wasn’t far now. We kept going and the rain along with the thunder and lightning kept coming. Finally I was at the bridge. Hmmm, not much of a bridge. But what the heck. I was going across. I had to close the umbrella because the wind was so bad going across the river / sewer. I got to the other side of the bridge to find nothing. I mean there was a platform, but no stairs. Under the platform there was a fence to prevent you from going anywhere should you jump from the end of the bridge. I don’t get it. Who decided to build a bridge to nothing, over a river with the stench of a sewer, and not put any signs up for directions to it. The only mention of the bridge seems to be in the tourist brochures.

My next item in town was the moose. It was Maxamillion the Moose. He is 18 feet tall and every bit a moose. The town celebrates the birthday of this moose each year on July 18. Not quite sure why he is there but this is moose country and the town has a festival called ‘Moosefest’.
After my attempt at tourism in Dryden, the town with a stench, I took care of the shop I had to do and found a wi-fi connection behind a hotel. I got the report entered so I would not have to worry about it later on that night.
After getting a look and a smell at Dryden, we were off. I was not sure how far we were going to go. If I found some area that was scenic and did not stink, we would stop for the night. Otherwise, we were headed for Sioux Lookout. Hopefully we would have better luck there.

We ended up driving all the way to Sioux Lookout, or just outside the town, and found a rest area. It was very scenic with picnic tables overlooking the lake. We thought this may be the spot we spend the night. We stayed there for a while, then decided to drive into town, just to get a look at Sioux Lookout. We got on the highway and immediately came to a bridge and a nice resort, that had tiny cabins along the shore. And there were people fishing in boats on the water. It was very picturesque. Then we kept driving a few minutes more and it began to rain, no it began to pour. I had to pull over. I could not see in front of me with the wipers on full. We have been experiencing this weather for weeks now on the road. It pours like crazy for ten minutes, then slows down and stops. The clouds were moving at quite a speed. Soon the rain stopped and we went on a little further. We did not see anything else that looked like a better option than the rest area we found, so we went back and slept in the van at the rest area.

July 10 to 12 Trip to Sioux Lookout – page 1

I decided to try a three day trip this time. We got the van ready for the trip and put a foam mattress in the back to cut down on expenses of hotels. I had two shops lined up that would pay enough to make the trip worth while. I got another two finalized just before leaving on Saturday morning.
We gassed up in Winnipeg, I mean we filled the tank in Winnipeg. It has been a while since I put my own money in the tank, but there were no gas shops available along the way this time. There was no calculating to see how far I could get on the gas I had and how full the tank would get at each stop along the way. No figuring if I would run out or have too much gas. This was a less complicated trip. Just drive to Dryden, take care of a shop and Drive to Sioux Lookout and take care of another one. Spend a relaxing day in or around Sioux Lookout and take care of two more shops. That was it.
So we headed out of town, going East on the Trans Canada Hwy. I remembered the highway was under construction between Winnipeg and Hwy 12 to Steinbach, so I took a detour through Lorette and got onto the Trans Canada at Hwy 12. As we were driving through the Sandilands we remembered an article in the Winnipeg Free Press by Bill Redekop about a 10 foot wide fiberglass tree stump. It was somewhere in the bush between the divided highways around the rest area that had the chip truck. We couldn’t remember where he said the tree stump was, but he did mention it was very hard to find and it took him several attempts before he was able to locate it. If the underbrush is too thick you could walk right past it. Anyways, we pulled into the rest area and asked the people at the chip stand if they knew anything about the 10 foot fiberglass tree stump. The woman said she just read the article not long ago. She said someone came by with it, and showed them the article. She remembered the directions and gave them to me. Her husband also gave his version of the instructions. Both versions required us to turn around and head back toward town. Well, that was not going to happen, but on the way home we would look for the stump. They said it was either seven or ten miles west of the rest area. You turn left at their sign along the highway, either after the Brokenhead River or at the Pipeline. It’s in the bush somewhere around there. I wasn't sure I would be able to find it from those directions, but I thought we could give it a try.
We left the rest area and were back on the Trans Canada heading East. We stopped at the Ontario border at the tourist information. I wanted to get some tourist information and maps of the area we were heading to, a better map of Ontario, and some more information on the Lake of the Woods area. I got everything I was looking for, including a great map of the Lake of the Woods area in the Sunset Country brochure. We asked the lady at the tourism center if a fellow with a shopping cart and bamboo hat had been through. She said “as a matter of fact yes, he came through two days ago”. We have been spotting this person along the Highway now on a few occasions. When we went to Brandon a few weeks ago (June 25) we saw him around Austin. On our last trip to Kenora (July 3-4), we saw him just East of Prawda. Now he is inside Ontario.
The lady at the tourism center said he is from Japan. He started his trip in BC and he is going across the country along the Trans Canada Highway pushing a shopping cart with his travel gear. The tourism lady said there was also a man from Korea who was cycling across Canada. We commented that we have seen several different cyclists, some with campers following, some on their own, and others traveling in groups.
We got back on the road, this time going around Kenora. We went as far as Vermillion Bay and stopped at the gas station for a rest. There were a group of cyclists stopped as well. We went over to talk to them. There were four cyclists, two were from New Brunswick. They flew to Vancouver and are cycling back home. They started at the beginning of June and had planned on taking three months to cycle across the country. They met up with the Korean cyclist somewhere in BC for a short time. Then met him again a day or two ago. The other cyclist was a woman that they met up with a few days ago as well.

The guys from New Brunswick are not your ordinary jock cyclists doing a marathon trip across the country. They are a couple of young guys, very tattooed, and one was sporting quite a number of metal objects on his face, in his ears, along the back of his neck, and I am sure various other locations. They had not done a lot of preparation for the trip in the way of long distance cycling. One of them purchased a bike just for the trip. But what better way to train for a long distance trip across the country than to put one pedal in front of the other.
We swapped sayings on the philosophy of travel.

“It’s not the destination but the journey” – an old Turkish proverb.
“If you never travel you have only read one page of the book of your life” – possibly Oscar Wilde.
“A man who has never traveled thinks his mother is the best cook in the world” the guys heard that from a fellow from Ghana.

Then I got a picture of the statue at the gas station in Vermillion Bay. Next stop would be Dryden, Ontario.

Monday, July 12, 2010

July 7 Highway of the Dams

I was asked to go to Pine Falls and Lac Du Bonnet to take care of a few shops. Well, actually, I requested the trip and my request was accepted.
I remember going out to Seven Sisters Falls as a child and knew the area was quite scenic. My plan was to take in this wonderful scenery and maybe stay for a while at Seven Sisters, which is just down the road from Lac Du Bonnet, on the way back home.
As usual, I found a few other shops to take care of along the way and/or in the same towns I was already going. I picked up shops in Selkirk, Pine Falls and Lac Du Bonnet.
We started mid-morning, as I could not perform my shop in Pine Falls until noon.
The trip was uneventful up to Selkirk. I have been on that road so many time, and we had new highway to explore. After Selkirk we took the “Bridge to Nowhere” from Selkirk, heading North. The bridge actually goes somewhere now. It used to cross the Red River and stop.

We took the road through Stead, Manitoba to get to Pine Falls and Powerview. We stopped in Powerview and took some nice scenic pictures of the Dam on the River.

There was a sign in the park showing the Dam System along the river, and I noticed there were several dams in the system that we would be passing on the way to Lac Du Bonnet. I was going to try and stop at as many of the Dams along the route as possible.
There were a few workers in the park trimming trees. We went over and talked to them, saying how scenic it was. They mentioned a gravel road in town that will take you to a very nice location at the end of a Point.

We followed their directions and found the place. There were some people on the rocks watching the water. After a while of seeing them standing on the rocks, just watching the water, we asked what they were looking for. Minnows. They had nets and were catching minnows to sell. They did not catch any minnows while we were there, but I am sure they know what they are doing.
We left the scenic stop and took care of the shops that needed to be done in Pine Falls, then off we went down the Highway of the Dams.

The next dam we saw was at Great Falls. We parked the van and took a walk across the Dam.

There is also a large propellor on display which was retired from use.

The plaque says "This 190 inch diameter, 28,000 horsepower, fixed blade propellor hydraulic turbine runner was first placed in service at Great Falls generating station on March 25, 1923. It was retired from service on May 11, 1984 after generating 7.4 Billion kilowatt hours of electrical energy. It is erected at this site as a tribute to the pioneers of the hydro-electric industry in Manitoba".

The next Dam along the route was the McArthur Falls Dam.

The McArthur Falls dam was constructed between 1952 and 1954 and went online in 1954.

We pulled in to Lac Du Bonnet and took care of the shops that needed to be done. After that we went into an Antique store in town. The entrance to the store was on 2nd St. The guy named his shop “What’s on Second”. After expressing an interest in old junk, he took us through the back to the store across the alley. It was full of amazing old stuff. He even had an arcade game from 1911. If you are ever in the area of Lac Du Bonnet, drop in and have a look.

After the brief stop in Lac Du Bonnet we headed south to Seven Sisters.

We found a dirt road that took us to a picnic area and the water.

There were pelicans in the water at the bottom of the rapids, just waiting for lunch to arrive. We stayed for a while and enjoyed the view.

Along the road back to the highway we pulled over to get a look at the Dam.
Then we drove into the town of Seven Sisters and got ice cream. That was just what we needed after a day in the sun.
After that we were back on the road, and on our way home.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

July 3-4 A trip to Gods Country - Lake of the Woods, Ontario

I got a phone call asking me if I would be able to go to Fort Frances, Ontario. I could, I mean if I wanted to. I told the person it would be an overnight trip. I did not want to drive 9 hours and have to come home and enter shops until 2:00am. I said I could do the shop but I would need extra money because I would be staying in a hotel overnight. I also asked if there were any other shops they had in the area that I could take care of for them. The person looked a bit, and found two other shops. I was approved over the phone for the amount I asked for, and the assignments were sent to me. I was told I could perform the shops over the weekend.

So there it was, a paid trip to Lake of the Woods for the July 3-4 weekend.
I had a look at the other companies I get shops from and managed to find a few along the way. When travelling long distances it is best to try and get gasoline shops along the way. I did manage to do this, and picked up four gas shops along with the original three shops that started the trip.

We stopped at Grunthal, Manitoba to take a picture of a huge Buffalo along the side of the road. The plaque says it was erected because of the tourisma a game farm at Grunthal brought to the area.
We took the "Moms Way" Highway down through Sprague, Manitoba into the USA at Warroad, Minnesota and back up into Canada at Rainy River, Ontario. The Highway is called MOMs way because of the Manitoba, Ontario, Minnesota connection. It is the quickest way to Fort Frances, shaving an hour off the drive compared to the Canadian route through Kenora.
We hit bad weather while still in Canada along the highway to Sprague. It started raining, then pouring so bad we could hardly see the road. It lasted about ten minutes, then blew over. By the time we were at the US Border there was no more rain.

We crossed the border with no trouble at all and went on to Warroad. We did a tour of the town and picked up some deli food from the local grocery store. Then we went down to the dock and had a picnic. On the way out of town I got a picture of the fountain along the lake.

We left Warroad and went on to Baudette, Minnesota, the border town to get back into Canada at Rainy River. While in Baudette, we took in some of the 4th of July Festivities in town. I found another statue in town, it was Willie the Walleye. He is perched in a park by the lake, at the turn off to the Canadian Border.
Again, we were able to get through the border crossing without any issues. The smaller crossings are a lot more relaxed. We got into Rainy River, and took care of a shop. Then we went down the MOMs Way Highway to Fort Frances. The town of Fort Frances was a bit of a disappointment. It was smaller than I had expected and nothing really to do or see. The shop I needed to do was listed as Highway 11 East, Fort Frances. We had quite a hard time in finding it. We traveled east of Fort Frances but came across a Reserve, so I thought we had gone too far. We went back into town and asked some of the locals where the particular business was. We were told to go past the Reserve, and over the Bridge, and it would be another five kilometers. We went through the Reserve, then to the Bridge, which was under construction. We waited until we could cross the bridge because it was down to a single lane. Then we crossed the bridge and drove on. The scenery was amazing of course. It was, after all, part of Lake of the Woods. But it was a bit annoying traveling down the road to some unknown destination, hoping the business was there, was still in business, and we would be able to find it. After traveling ten kilometers past the bridge we found it. And it was open for business, thank goodness. We took care of the shop, then turned back around. We drove the ten kilometers back to the bridge, waited for our turn to cross, then through the Reservation, and on to Fort Frances. After getting to Fort Frances we decided not to spend the night. We would keep going and see if we could find a nice place to spend the evening. We did not have to be in Kenora until the next day.
We headed north on Highway 71 believing we would find a nice tourist location to spend the night. There were a few towns, provincial parks, and rest areas along the highway, and from the map it looked like it would be very scenic. But a short while after getting on the highway it started to rain again. At it poured. It just kept coming down and was getting hard to see. Then it stopped raining and we made a few more miles. It started to pour again when we were coming up to Sioux Narrows so we pulled in to what we thought was a hotel. The hotel was closed and up for sale. But at least we got off the highway for a while and took a break. Once it stopped raining we thought we would have a look around Sioux Narrows. We started driving and the town seemed to end. We must have driven through the majority of the town when it was raining. We really could not see much when it was raining.

We ended up driving all the way to Kenora. Just before the edge of town, there was a business with a giant spider constructed out of pipes and a Volkswagon Beetle. We stopped to get a picture of it.
I checked out a few hotels in town. The Best Western was full, but they recommended the Comfort Inn, giving directions for me. At the Comfort Inn they had room, but they wanted $130.00 plus taxes. I thought that was a bit much, so we headed for one of the hotels that let you park your car in front of the door. One of the budget locations. It was a lot cheaper and boasted a wireless internet connection. So we would be able to get out of the weather and I could enter my reports. There were tornado warnings for the area so we figures we needed to get a room at a hotel for the night. Sometimes when we travel we just sleep in the van. This was not one of those nights.
We pulled up to our room and it started to rain again. We took in the important stuff, my computer and a few other essentials, and I tried to get a connection to the internet. It took a while but I managed. Then I tried to enter the reports. The connection was so bad that it was taking almost five minutes between screens. It was taking me almost two hours to get a few simple reports entered. The last one would not even work. I was trying to upload a few receipts and it just would not go. Finally, we made the decision to pack up the computer, get into the car, and drive to the parking lot of another hotel. I was going to try and get an internet connection from another source. So, we got into the car and headed for the Comfort Inn, the expensive place I did not want to pay for. I got on the internet almost instantly, and had the report entered in two minutes.
Now that the reports were done, I could focus on the next most important thing, food. It was getting late, well it was very late, and there were no restaurants open. I saw a sign for a 24 hour convenience store. We went in and had a look at the options. Everything was over priced and nothing was very good for you. We had no can opener, but there was a microwave in the hotel. We grabbed a few items that we could microwave and called it a night.

The next day we headed downtown and found the locations we needed to perform shops at. Then we went to the waterfront and checked out the tourist area for a while. There was a big bear statue in the park beside the tourist information center. We stopped in to see if we could get maps of the area and see what kind of things one does when in Kenora.
After going for a walk around the waterfront and a few of the shops we headed out of town and back to Winnipeg.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

June 25 Brandon Manitoba is the destination of the day

We started out today just after 11:00am today. I have to be in Brandon between noon and 3pm for two shops and the other is anytime during business hours. I figured we would be in Brandon just after 1pm if there were no delays.
Winnipeg has two seasons, Winter and Construction. We were going to take Inkster right to the West Perimeter and get out of town fast. It didn’t end up that way. We knew there was a bit of construction on Inkster, but it turned into a long line of single traffic, slow congestion. We decided to cut our losses and turn North on Brookside and hit the Perimeter Hwy from that angle because the construction was extended down Inkster past Brookside. We got onto the Perimeter, and took it around to the West leg, and found more construction. It was good that we left early. We didn’t get out of the construction on the Perimeter until just after 12pm.

The highway through Headingly and as far as the White Horse was quite congested as well. It’s Friday, and I guess people are heading out of town for the weekend.
We stopped at the White Horse and took a few pictures.

One of the plaques at the statue explains the significance of the statue.
It says "White Horse Plain. A Sioux Indian Chief wished to marry the beautiful daughter of an Assiniboine Chief. The Assiniboine, however, gve his daughter's hand to a Cree Chief with whom she was in love because the Cree offered a rare snow-white horse as a gift. The angry Sioux pursued the Cree and his bride whose father had returned the horse to help them escape. The Sioux killed them both but the horse escaped. For years it was seen roaming the surrounding plain and in memory of the young lovers this part of Manitoba became known as White Horse Plain."
It's interesting how places get their names. This has always been a landmark to denote the start of the Old #1 Hwy. It’s a great little twisty road to take from The White Horse, through the town of St Francis Xaviar up to Portage La Prairie.

Then on to Brandon. We hit a stretch of construction between Carberry and Brandon. It looks like they are widening the highway. It almost looks like they are making it a three lane highway in each direction. What an odd thing to do on this stretch of the road. That’s our tax dollars hard at work.
We made it to Brandon in good time. I have been there before, so it was fairly easy to navigate around to the different shops I had to do. One was on Victoria Ave and then two were on 18th Street. We went to the mall as well and checked out a great little restaurant. It’s called Five Guys Burger and Fries. When you step in the door you can smell the fresh French fries cooking. The portions are large and the taste is superb. But why does Brandon have this burger joint and not Winnipeg? Is it because Winnipeg already has several exceptional burger joints? Or will we be getting a Five Guys sometime in the near future? Hmmm. When we got our food, the burger was buried deep in the bottom of a paper bag stuffed full of hot, freshly made, home-style fries. Oh my!

After our great meal, we headed back to Winnipeg. We stopped in Austin to take a picture of the Threshing Machine on top of a post at the entrance to the town.

Then we went down the road a bit to the entrance of the Museum. There were two thresher machines at the entrance to the museum. We decided not to go into the museum. I just got a few pictures of the machines.

After that it was straight on to Winnipeg. Nothing much happened on the highway home. We got home around 6pm, and I entered the information for my Mystery Shop reports.